Due to quarantine and life, I took almost a two year break from blogging. Here is what I’ve learned…
Wow! I absolutely cannot believe it has been almost two years since I last wrote to you. I was preparing to take my normal break after the 2019 holiday and come back to you with AMAZING content in February 2020. I could not have imagined that we would be smack in the middle of a pandemic for the foreseeable future.
When the news of the shutdown hit, I was at PlannerCon in San Francisco. It was my first time as a vendor and it was definitely a different atmosphere due to the concerns of the pending pandemic. We made it to the Saturday sessions and I was packing up for the day when there was an announcement on the loud speaker that we had to shutdown immediately. Enter the panic…
The very next Monday, less than 48 hours after the PlannerCon shutdown, I was anxiously told we had to pack up our work computers and head home. The world around me was closing in and somehow I felt optimistic. After packing up my work computer and heading to the grocery store to prepare for Armageddon, I went home to the comfort of my baby boy, CupCake Chanel.
After releasing the panic coming from all the uncertainty that was surrounding me, I realized this is what I prayed for. I prayed specifically to be able to spend more time with my dog, have time to exercise, and have more work/life balance. I got it! I fell in love with working from home. But I still wasn’t blogging.
I took most of this time to concentrate on reconnecting with my goals. Of course I used my The Diva Diaries® Make The Vision Plain Goal Setting Workbook and Planner to get in alignment with what I truly wanted. I lost 22lbs (which I have now gained back. More on that another time.), published a short run of the workbook, began seriously working on clearing my acne and so much more.
Once I realized this time of mandatory pause was an answer to my direct prayer, I started to appreciate everything that was happening. The good. The bad. And the Better!
It wasn’t easy for everyone. I know some people had a really difficult time. I’ve been there. Back in 2009, and a few years after that, I had a terrible time at life. I felt like I was failing at everything and I had been laid off somewhere in those years too. I imagine this is what some people felt like during the pandemic layoffs and uncertainty. The pandemic has been a blessed time for me and I’ve learned a few things I want to share with you:
- Don’t flake on your goals because of tough times. I’ve been through economic downturns, failed relationships, suicidal thoughts and everything else life has thrown at me during my 38 years. One thing is for certain, your goals and purpose are still going to be waiting for you at the other side of hard times. So why not concentrate on making progress even through difficulty? My first time getting laid off was tough. I wish I had this advice. Oh how much further I would have been if I kept pursuing my goals. But I totally shutdown and it felt like the weight of the world was on me. So heavy. But now that I have been through more life I know that at the end of it all your goals and purpose are waiting on you. Those bad times never stayed and the Lord always brought me through them. When He did, it was time to get back on my goals. What if I had stayed pursing my goals instead of wallowing in self pity during the tough seasons of my life?
- Being a dog mom ROCKS!! No seriously!! I do not know what I would have done during this quarantine if I didn’t have my little fur son. He made staying in the house as a single woman so much more pleasant. It was CupCake Chanel and mommy all day every day and I LIVE FOR IT!! God works everything for my good. He knew that in 2020 I would be going through this pandemic and he sent CupCake Chanel in 2018 to help me get through it! If you don’t have kids or a significant other, get a dog! If you do have kids and a significant other, get a dog!
- Having a solid friend circle is EVERYTHING! I took for granted how much spending time with my circle of friends meant to me. When we couldn’t get together in person, we found ways to keep in touch. While NOTHING can replace that in-person friend time, we did what we could to stay in touch and do our part to stay safe during the pandemic. I went almost a year without seeing anyone in person one on one. Being apart like this also helped me to evaluate my friendships. My friend Alicia Greer and I talked on her show, Queen Talk, about friendships and it was so good. I highly recommend you watch the show and get your friendships in order. You can watch here: QUEEN TALK! | Confrontation in Friendships, Check or Dessert, Q&A with Crystal-Marie Mitchell! It is hard times like these when friendships can be tested.
- God can bless you in any situation! Just because there is a pandemic doesn’t mean God can’t or isn’t blessing you. I was given more bonuses and raises during the pandemic than I had in the last few years pre-pandemic. He doesn’t require the world to be in a perfect state for Him to be able to pour out His blessings on you. I’m not just writing about monetary blessings. Being in my own home from the start of the pandemic until now, has allowed me to pause and take in more peace. I’ve gotten so much mental clarity from this pandemic pause and I cannot tell you how much weight has been lifted off of my shoulders. Peace can do that for you. When I got clear about what I wanted, God started removing road blockers. *insert praise dance*
What have you learned during the pandemic?